How Much Does Payroll Service Cost?

In today’s fast-paced business world, managing payroll effectively and efficiently has become a crucial aspect of any successful organization. With the rise of digital solutions, online payroll services have emerged as a powerful tool for businesses of all sizes, offering streamlined processes, automated calculations, and compliance with tax laws. However, one of the most pressing questions for any business considering these services is: How much do they cost?

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Compare Payroll Costs by Provider

Now, let’s delve into the pricing structures of some of the leading online payroll service providers, including SurePayroll, Paycom, Gusto, ADP, QuickBooks, Paychex, Paycor, and Rippling. By comparing their pricing models and additional features, we aim to provide a comprehensive overview that can guide businesses in making an informed decision about which service best suits their payroll needs and budget constraints. Whether you’re a small start-up or a large corporation, understanding the cost implications of these services is vital for efficient financial planning and management. Let’s explore what each of these providers has to offer, and listed below. You’ll also find five free payroll service options available when you sign up.

QuickBooks Cost:

Quickbooks Logo

Offers three plans for QuickBooks Online Payroll: Core ($45 per month), Premium ($75 per month), and Elite ($125 per month), plus a per-employee charge of $4, $8, and $10 respectively. QuickBooks Enhanced Payroll for QuickBooks Desktop users is available at $50 per month, plus $2 per employee per month.  Benefits:

  • Integrated Accounting Features: QuickBooks offers comprehensive accounting solutions, including invoicing, expense tracking, and financial reporting, suitable for small businesses.
  • Easy Tax Preparation and Compliance: Simplifies tax filing and ensures compliance with automated tax calculations, deductions, and submissions.

QuickBooks Payroll integrates seamlessly with QuickBooks accounting software, providing a unified solution for financial management. It offers flexible plans with features like automated tax calculations, direct deposit, and same-day payroll, catering to a variety of business needs while ensuring accuracy and compliance in payroll processing.

Paychex Cost:

Paychex Logo

Their payroll services start at $39 a month plus $5 per employee per month for the Paychex Flex Essentials plan.Benefits:

  • Comprehensive Payroll and HR Services: Paychex offers integrated payroll processing, tax services, and HR solutions, streamlining business operations.
  • Customizable Employee Benefits: Provides a range of customizable employee benefits, including health insurance and retirement plans, enhancing employee satisfaction and retention.

Paychex offers a versatile range of services from payroll to HR and benefits administration, suitable for any business size. It features 24/7 support, a user-friendly platform, and robust tax compliance capabilities. Their scalable solutions grow with your business, making them a solid choice for long-term payroll management.

3 Months FREE With Signup

Paycor Cost:

Paycor Logo

Paycor cost roughly $18-$26 a month to get started, however, for current plans and specials visit their website at the link below. Benefits:

  • Streamlined HR and Payroll: Paycor offers integrated solutions for payroll, tax compliance, and employee management, simplifying complex processes for businesses.
  • Intuitive User Interface: The platform’s user-friendly design and mobile accessibility enhance productivity by allowing easy management of HR tasks from anywhere.

Paycor offers a user-centric design that simplifies payroll and HR processes, with a suite of tools that enhance recruitment, onboarding, and employee management. It provides valuable insights through analytics, and its focus on small to medium-sized businesses ensures a tailored approach to payroll and HR solutions.

Rippling Cost:

rippling logo

Rippling starts at $8 a month, per user end it includes HR, IT, and finance software. Benefits:

  • Unified Employee Management: Rippling centralizes HR, IT, and finance processes, streamlining employee data management across various systems.
  • Automated Workflows: Automates key HR tasks like onboarding, benefits enrollment, and payroll, reducing manual effort and increasing efficiency.

Rippling excels in its ability to unify payroll, HR, and IT services, offering a comprehensive platform that simplifies employee management. It automates many administrative tasks, integrates with over 500 apps, and provides a unique feature to manage company devices, making it a standout choice for tech-forward businesses.

Gusto Cost:

Gusto logo

Offers three main pricing plans: Simple ($40 per month + $6 per person), Plus ($80 per month + $12 per person), and Premium (contact Gusto for pricing). They also provide a subscription-free plan for businesses hiring only contractors and a free month-long trial for new customers.  Benefits:

  • Comprehensive Payroll Services: Gusto automates payroll, tax filings, and compliance, ensuring accuracy and saving time.
  • Employee Benefits Management: Offers integrated management of health insurance, 401(k), and other employee benefits, streamlining enrollment and administration.

Gusto stands out for its intuitive design and user-friendly platform, offering a range of flexible plans to fit various business sizes. It integrates payroll with benefits and HR, provides excellent customer support, and its automated tax processing reduces errors, making it an ideal choice for modern, streamlined payroll management.

FREE Month Trial

ADP Cost:

ADP Logo

Pricing depends on the number of employees and the complexity of needs. The basic package is around $59 per month plus $4 per employee. Annually, for a 25 person company, the cost typically ranges from $2,000 to $4,000. The price increases with more frequent payroll runs.  Learn more about ADP’s 3 month FREE trial, click here. Benefits:

  • Extensive Payroll and HR Solutions: ADP provides a wide range of HR services, including payroll, tax, benefits, and compliance management, suitable for businesses of all sizes.
  • Advanced Analytics and Reporting: Offers robust analytics and reporting tools, enabling informed decision-making and strategic HR management.

ADP offers scalable payroll solutions suitable for both small businesses and large enterprises. Its robust features include comprehensive tax compliance, HR tools, and a wealth of customizable payroll options. ADP’s global reach and expertise also ensure that businesses benefit from its extensive experience in the payroll sector.

3 Months FREE With Signup

Paycom Cost:


Paycom offers payroll outsourcing for around $25 a month and quote-based pricing, so the cost will depend on the specific services and features your business requires. Benefits:

  • All-in-One HR Solution: Paycom consolidates payroll, HR, talent acquisition, and time and labor management into a single software system.
  • Employee Self-Service Portal: Offers an intuitive self-service portal for employees to manage their own HR tasks, improving efficiency and reducing administrative workload.

Paycom provides a comprehensive, all-in-one payroll and HR solution, streamlining processes with its single software system. Its customizable features cater to specific business needs, ensuring a tailored approach to payroll management, and its user-friendly interface simplifies the complexities of employee data management.

SurePayroll Cost:

surepayroll logo

Offers a base payroll plan starting at $19.99 to $29.99 per month, plus a $4 per employee charge. Prices may vary depending on sales representatives. They also offer a 2-month free trial for small business customers. The app is free for employees of companies using SurePayroll for payroll.  Benefits:

  • Automated Payroll Processing: SurePayroll offers easy-to-use, automated payroll services, ideal for small businesses, with options for tax filing and compliance.
  • Flexible Payroll Options: Provides a range of customizable payroll solutions, including various payment methods and schedules, catering to diverse business needs.

SurePayroll offers affordability with its low monthly base rate and per-employee fee structure, making it a cost-effective choice for small businesses. Additionally, its two-month free trial allows businesses to evaluate the service before committing, and the free mobile app enhances accessibility for both employers and employees.

Payroll Outsourcing FAQ’s

Navigating the complexities of payroll can be daunting for businesses, as the costs involved are influenced by a myriad of factors, from employee count to the intricacies of tax regulations. Understanding the determinants of payroll expenses is crucial for efficient financial management. This concise guide aims to demystify the pricing structures of payroll services and software, offering insights into cost-saving strategies, outlining the core services of outsourced payroll, and addressing common queries. Armed with this knowledge, businesses can make informed decisions, ensuring their payroll processes are both cost-effective and compliant with regulatory demands.

When considering the cost of payroll services and software, several factors come into play:

  1. Number of Employees: Providers typically charge per employee, so the more staff you have, the higher your costs will be.
  2. Payment Frequency: If you run payroll weekly, it will cost more than running it bi-weekly or monthly due to the increased number of transactions.
  3. Service Features: Basic services are cheaper but adding on features like tax filing, direct deposit, or access to a human HR advisor will increase costs.
  4. Integration Needs: If you need the payroll service to integrate with your existing systems (like HR or accounting software), this can add to the cost.
  5. Geographical Location: Taxes and compliance requirements can vary by location, potentially impacting cost.
  6. Industry-Specific Requirements: Certain industries have unique payroll needs that might require more expensive, specialized services.

How Can I Reduce Online Payroll Costs?

  1. Reevaluate Your Needs: Only pay for the services you need. If you’re paying for features you don’t use, consider downgrading your plan.
  2. Consolidate Providers: Using one provider for payroll, HR, and benefits could be cheaper than using several separate services.
  3. Automate Where Possible: Using software to automate processes can reduce the need for manual entry and oversight.
  4. Negotiate Pricing: Some providers may offer discounts if you commit to a longer contract or have a large number of employees.

What Services Are Included in Payroll Outsourcing?

  • Calculating payroll and tax obligations
  • Filing and paying payroll taxes
  • Issuing paychecks and direct deposits
  • Managing new employee onboarding from a payroll perspective
  • Generating reports for accounting and compliance
  • Providing employee access to pay stubs and end-of-year tax documents
  • Handling wage garnishments

Some other frequently asked payroll questions include:

  • How secure is the payroll service? Security is crucial since payroll services handle sensitive financial data.
  • What kind of customer support is offered? Good support can be essential, especially for complex payroll issues.
  • Is the service scalable? As your business grows, you’ll want a service that can grow with you.
  • How does the service stay compliant with tax laws? The service should update automatically with changes in tax legislation to keep you compliant.

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